Encouraging and showing our younger generation how to enjoy recreational fishing has always been important to me. It teaches them about conservation and to respect the environment, gives them an opportunity to live an outdoors lifestyle and also to some degree how to be self sufficient. One issue with this is kids, more so than adults, can easily be deterred from fishing when they are not catching. From my experience, here are a few things that I have found important to make my experience land based fishing with kids more enjoyable for everyone.
Choosing a suitable location is important when fishing with kids. Ground that doesn’t provide slip and trip hazards and if possible an area away from the water where they can run around when their attention span wanders.
If there is only one adult around and multiple children then it might be worth considering having your children wear a PFD while around the water.
Pick days where it isn’t blowing a gale. Fishing in the wind with kids can become a handful when casting and retrieving lines. It also eliminates the likeliness of chasing hats, bags and other items that blow away.
Try and keep the trips short. For young kids, a couple of hours at most. From my experience, this ensures that the positive experience is maintained rather than the negative that usually develops after a couple of hours when they start to get bored or hungry.
Take snacks and drinks to break up the time for the kids when their attention wanders.
Generally I have a couple of rods and a loaf of bread.
– One rod will be setup with a float, hook and splitshot sinker. This makes thefishing more visual for the kids, generally they get just as excited watching the float bobbing up and down as they do when actually landing the fish.
– The bread is there for the kids to break up and throw out as burley if they aren’teating it.
– The other rod will have a soft plastic or hard bodied lure tied on so that I can castout and this kids retrieve. This is good while waiting for the bread to attract the fish.
Get out there, get kids involved and keep the experience enjoyable. What tips do you have to enhance the experience with your kids?